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Biggest snow in years in NSW and it's October

Brett Dutschke, Friday October 12, 2012 - 09:49 EDT

Snow has been falling right along the New South Wales ranges, in places that didn't see snow all winter, for some it is the heaviest in several years.

The heaviest falls on Thursday night and Friday morning have been between the Blue Mountains and Canberra. Snow has been falling in Orange and has been heavy in Oberon, Crookwell and Bowral. As much as 20 centimetres has reportedly settled on the ground in the Crookwell area.

The Canberra area itself also had snow on Thursday, the national capital's coldest October day since 1974, staying below nine degrees all day.

Snow has also been heavy in the Blue Mountains, even a few centimetres worth settling on the ground in Katoomba. According to locals, it is the heaviest snow in four-or-five years.

Further north, snow has fallen in Glen Innes and Armidale, unusual in winter, very unusual in October. Residents woke to white ground in Glen Innes and the cover has been about fifteen centimetres deep in Guyra. It has been five years since snow has been this evident in Glen Innes.

October snow in Guyra typically only occurs once every five years, but this is unusually heavy, more like a one-in-20-year event for this time of year.

The pool of cold, dry air responsible for these snowfalls is moving away to the east and is being replaced by warmer, moist air, drawn in by an offshore low. This is already causing snow to turn to rain on the Southern Tablelands and will do the same in the Blue Mountains by lunchtime.

Snowfalls may last into the afternoon in the Guyra area before it warms up too much. By then even the Queensland Granite Belt may have been lightly brushed by a sleety mix of showers and snow.

- Weatherzone

© Weatherzone 2012

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